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One common myth that seems to prevent people from seeking help from a bankruptcy lawyer is that their employer will fire them for filing. There seems to be a belief that employers will learn of the bankruptcy and automatically fire the employee for being untrustworthy or poor with money. The reality is an employer cannot fire someone solely for filing bankruptcy due to discrimination laws. If you worry that dealing with debt might cost you your job, you don’t need to worry.
It is important to note that an employee cannot be fired “solely” for filing bankruptcy (nor can his or her spouse). If there are other reasons for a dismissal (such as downsizing or poor employee performance), the law will not protect you from this. But an employer cannot hold your bankruptcy filing against you in terms of your employment.
It should also be noted that this doesn’t cover pre-hiring decisions. There are some employers who run a credit check on their potential employees in order to find any problem issues. A bankruptcy might be used as a factor in a decision not to hire someone. But the truth is that most people who are considering bankruptcy protection have already had their credit ravaged by defaults, collection actions, and other adverse activities. A bankruptcy lawyer can examine your situation and explain exactly how much bankruptcy will impact your credit score.
The bottom line is: in most cases, your employer will have no idea that you filed bankruptcy. Unless your employer is a creditor on your filing or if your Chapter 13 payments are required to be deducted directly from your paycheck, the employer won’t receive notice of your bankruptcy. In almost all cases, the bankruptcy court will work with a filer to make sure that they keep their job throughout the bankruptcy process.
At Westbrook Law Group, we know how difficult it can be to struggle with debt. We do everything possible to help you through this difficult time. For a free consultation, contact our office right away.